Lok Sabha Elections 2019: Counting tomorrow
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Lok Sabha Elections 2019: Counting tomorrow

  • 12-hour ban orders in Mysuru, 42-hour curbs in Mandya
  • No liquor sale for 24 hours from midnight today
  • People barred from taking out victory processions

Mysuru: Fool-proof preparations have been made to ensure that the counting of votes polled in the Lok Sabha elections goes off without a hitch tomorrow and all arrangements are in place for counting of votes cast for Mysuru-Kodagu Parliamentary Constituency to be held at Maharani’s College of Commerce and Management on Valmiki Road.

Mysuru Deputy Commissioner Abhiram G. Sankar, who is also the District Election Officer, told reporters yesterday that counting will commence from 8 am and there might be nearly 6,500 postal ballots to be counted first. Later, counting of EVM votes which will be taken up in 15 rooms encompassing all the eight Assembly segments in the constituency — Krishnaraja, Chamaraja, Narasimharaja, Chamundeshwari, Hunsur, Periyapatna, Virajpet and Madikeri.

In all, 13,12,404 voters have exercised their franchise and there will be 19 rounds of counting. Officials can complete around 2 to 2.5 rounds of counting per hour and hence the official final announcement of the result can take place only around 3 pm. VVPAT (Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail) counting will start only after the completion of the EVM counting, as per the directives of the Election Commission of India and the Supreme Court.

A huge machinery of 1,300 government officials, excluding over 2,000 Police personnel involved in security arrangements, will be deployed to complete the process. A total of 132 tables have been set up for counting with 15 tables each for Madikeri, Virajpet, Periyapatna, Hunsur, Krishnaraja, Chamaraja and Narasimharaja Assembly constituencies.

Eighteen tables have been set up for Chamundeshwari segment, which has the highest of 338 polling booths.

This apart, there will be four tables to count postal votes and five tables to scan the votes cast through Electronically Transmitted Postal Ballot System (ETPBS). The deadline for receiving postal votes is till 8 am tomorrow, just before the counting of the votes begins.

Explaining the VVPAT counting, the DC said if the counting of votes in any EVM is not possible due to technical glitch, printed vote slips in its respective VVPAT unit will be counted. After the completion of the counting process in EVMs, the printed vote slips in five VVPAT units, randomly selected from each Assembly segment, will be physically counted to cross-check the authenticity of the votes cast. Thus, the vote slips in a total of 40 VVPAT units will be counted. If the votes in the EVM and the VVPAT unit do not tally, the vote slips in VVPAT will be declared as authentic count.

In Mandya that has attracted the nation’s attention, counting will take place at Unitary University (previously called Government College for Boys – Autonomous) off the Mysuru-Bengaluru Highway.

To prevent the possible occurrence of untoward incidents and to maintain law and order, the Mandya district administration has promulgated 42-hour ban orders from 6 am tomorrow under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. In Mysuru, the ban orders will be in force for 12 hours from 6 am tomorrow. Victory procession and bursting of crackers have been banned by the authorities.

There will be a ban on sale of liquor and the decision was taken keeping the safety of public and property in mind. Sale of liquor is banned for 24 hours from today midnight till tomorrow midnight. Police are taking the efforts to minimise, if not prevent, damage to public property as under the influence of alcohol, miscreants may take out processions of victory or defeat, putting the safety of lives and private property at risk.

Earliest results by 3 pm

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The earliest result will be known by 3 pm and the Election Commission hopes that the final figure will emerge by 6 pm. However, it can delay further if there are technical glitches or discrepancies. Karnataka Chief Electoral Officer Sanjiv Kumar said the earliest result will be delayed by three hours owing to the counting of VVPAT slips from five booths of every Assembly constituency.

One round of counting takes 45 minutes. For five rounds, it will take 3.45 hours. In some cases, it can exceed four hours,” Sanjiv Kumar said. “We will have to count 40 VVPATs in every parliamentary constituency. So, between 3 pm and 6 pm,  almost all the results should be out,” he added.

“We have made all arrangements to complete the counting process of all 28 seats before 7 pm,” he said. Amid allegations about possible EVM manipulations, the CEO said EVMs in Karnataka are well-guarded and safe.

Security arrangements

There will be two officers of the rank of Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), 6 ACPs, 22 Inspectors, 23 Sub-Inspectors, and 103 Assistant Sub-Inspectors. This is apart from 6 platoons of City Armed Reserve, 3 platoons of Karnataka State Reserve Police (KSRP), 10 Mounted Police, 30 Commandos, 40 Mobile Garuda force, and 78 Cheetah squad, said M. Muthuraj, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Law and Order).

A three-tier security is provided to the counting centre, while eight check posts and 24 pickets will be set up to check the movement of miscreants, he added.

May 22, 2019

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